Technology The next version of macOS will be called Big Sur
Valve will no longer support SteamVR on macOS
In an unsurprising turn of events, Valve has announced that it is ending SteamVR support for macOS. Spotted by Apple Insider, the company made a terse announcement on its website, stating that "SteamVR has ended [macOS] support so our team can focus on Windows and Linux." Legacy builds will remain available, though, so tinkerers can still code VR experiences that run on Apple hardware. SteamVR first came to Apple’s operating system with the 2017 launch of macOS High Sierra. The OS enabled the use of an external GPU (eGPU) over Thunderbolt 3, which could provide the additional processing power needed to run high-end VR applications.
At its, Apple unveiled a ton of updates , , and iPads, but the company also had news to share for its laptop products. We’re not just talking about the processors for Macs, either. Today, Apple announced that the next version of its desktop software will be macOS Big Sur, and it introduces a new design and major updates to important apps, said Craig Federighi.
Design changes begin with the app dock and Finder, which are refined to make better use of screen space. The Mail app has colors in the navigation interface again, while Photos will feature an updated sidebar. The gallery in Photos is also backed by Metal so animations show up quickly. The Menu bar is translucent now, and will take on the color of your background. You can also customize the Menu bar to give yourself one-click access to Do Not Disturb by dragging and dropping it in from the settings.
Messages on the Mac may finally catch up to its iOS counterpart
The Messages app on the Mac has lagged behind its iOS equivalent for a long time — it’s good for answering text messages without reaching for your iPhone, but many of the features and effects are missing. It might catch up this year, though. The 9to5Mac team has discovered hints of an overhauled Messages app for macOS in leaked iOS 14 code. The new software is reportedly a Catalyst-based app that will effectively mirror what you see in the iOS and iPadOS versions. You could chat with someone on their iPhone without worrying that you’ll miss part of the conversation, even if it’s just a fanciful sticker.
The Notifications Center has also been updated to feature better organization, and you can add widgets of various sizes to the panel, too.
Recent updates to macOS saw Apple try to squeeze more juice out of MacBooks. When the current version Catalina was rolled out, it and new accessibility features but said goodbye to iTunes and 32-bit legacy apps.
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You may finally be able to watch Netflix in 4K on a Mac with Big Sur .
Right now, Netflix on macOS may be capped at 1080p resolution — and only if you’re using Safari. If you’re using Chrome or Firefox, Netflix may stream as low at 720p, according to a Netflix support document. Netflix isn’t the only video platform getting a 4K boost with Apple’s upcoming software updates, as Apple announced last week that the Apple TV 4K will finally be able to play YouTube at 4K with tvOS 14.